The Country of Rwanda

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The Country of Rwanda is believed to have been occupied by humans shortly after the last ice age ended. The people had organized themselves into several kingdoms by the 16th century. Mwami (king) Rwabugiri of the Kingdom of Rwanda led a decades-long campaign of military conquest and administrative consolidation that saw the kingdom gain control of the majority of what is now The Country of Rwanda. Germany and Belgium, colonial powers, allied with the Rwandan court.

Belgium granted national independence in 1962 as a result of a convergence of anti-colonial and anti-Tutsi sentiment. Under President Grégoire Kayibanda, direct elections resulted in a representative government dominated by the majority of Hutu.

When Juvénal Habyarimana, a Hutu, seized power in 1973, unresolved ethnic and political tensions were exacerbated. The Rwandan Civil War began in 1990 when the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF), a rebel group made up of 10,000 Tutsi refugees from previous decades of unrest, invaded the country. As the war progressed, ethnic tensions increased as the Hutu feared losing their gains.

The assassination of Habyarimana triggered the 1994 genocide, which resulted in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Tutsis and moderate Hutus, including Prime Minister Agathe Uwilingiyimana. Thousands of Hutus were imprisoned pending the establishment of the Gacaca courts after the Tutsi RPF invaded The Country of Rwanda.

Millions of Hutu fled as refugees, contributing to large Hutu refugee camps in the neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo, where refugees from other countries were already present. These were dissolved in 1996 by an RPF-backed invasion that overthrew the new Congolese president following the First Congo War. The Second Congo War began with a second invasion to replace the new Congolese president, becoming the deadliest war since World War II and involving many African countries, including Rwanda, for many years.

The Country of Rwanda Map

Rwanda is bordered to the north by Uganda, Tanzania to the east, Burundi to the south, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (Kinshasa) and Lake Kivu to the west.

The Country of Rwanda Economy

Rwanda’s economy has rapidly industrialized as a result of effective government policy. The Country of Rwanda has experienced an economic boom since the early 2000s, which has improved the living standards of many Rwandans. The government’s progressive visions have acted as a catalyst for the economy’s rapid transformation. Rwandan President Paul Kagame has stated his desire to turn Rwanda into the “Singapore of Africa” by adopting the Singapore economic model.

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Development Challenges in Rwanda

Rwanda’s public-sector-led development model has flaws, as the country’s public debt has skyrocketed in recent years. Rwanda’s growth model is heavily reliant on large public investments (12.3 percent of GDP in 2019), resulting in significant fiscal deficits funded primarily through external borrowing.

As a result, the debt-to-GDP ratio in 2019 increased to 56.7 percent (from 19.4 percent in 2010). Grants, concessional and non-concessional borrowing were all key sources of external funding for public investments. The private sector will play a larger role in ensuring economic growth in the future. Private investment is hampered by a lack of domestic savings, a lack of skills, and the high cost of energy.

Stronger private sector dynamism will aid in maintaining high investment rates and accelerating growth. Domestic savings promotion is seen as crucial. Inclusive growth is also a significant challenge. The momentum for poverty reduction has slowed in recent years, highlighting the need for a medium-term public investment strategy to ensure a more effective allocation of resources to projects that are crucial for broad-based and inclusive economic recovery following the pandemic.

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The Country of Rwanda Climate

Temperatures in The Country of Rwanda are mild year-round, averaging 70 degrees Fahrenheit (21 degrees Celsius) in Kigali, for example, in the interior highlands. However, there are major differences between the northwest area of the volcanoes, where heavy rains are accompanied by lower average temperatures, and the warmer and drier interior highlands. The latter receives about 45 inches (1,140 millimeters) of annual rainfall, which is concentrated in two rainy seasons (roughly February to May and October to December).

Ethnic Groups in Rwanda

The largest ethnic groups in The Country of Rwanda, like Burundi, are Hutu and Tutsi, who account for more than four-fifths and one-seventh of the total population, respectively. The Twa are hunter-gatherer people who make up less than 1% of the population.

A small group of Europeans (mostly missionaries, workers of relief and development programs, and entrepreneurs), a small group of Asian traders, and Africans from Tanzania, Uganda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and elsewhere are among the other minorities.

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The Tutsi, with a strong pastoralist tradition, gained social, economic, and political ascendancy over the Hutu, who were mainly agriculturalists, as evidenced by the system of patron-client connections through which the Tutsi, with a strong pastoralist tradition, gained social, economic, and political ascendancy over the Hutu, who were primarily agriculturalists.

The once-distinct pastoral and agricultural systems have become increasingly intertwined, and nearly all farm households now produce crops and livestock at the same time. Approximately 150,000 to 300,000 Tutsi were forced out of the country during the Hutu revolution, which began in late 1959, reducing the former ruling aristocracy to an even smaller minority. Many Tutsis have returned to Rwanda after the 1994 genocide to recover their heritage.

Languages in the Country of Rwanda

The Country of Rwanda has three official languages: Kinyarwanda (the official language of Rwanda), English, and French. Rwanda is a Bantu language spoken by almost everyone in Rwanda. It is part of the Benue-Congo branch of the Niger-Congo language family. It is closely related to Rundi, a language spoken in Burundi’s neighboring country.

Although English was designated as the language of educational instruction in 2008, English and French have historically been spoken by only a small percentage of the population. Swahili is commonly spoken in the cities and is still the main language used by Africans from neighboring countries.

Religion in The Country of Rwanda

Rwanda is one of the countries in Africa where Christianity has had a significant impact. The Hutu revolution took a lot of its egalitarian inspiration from the teachings of the European clergy, and Catholic seminaries were used to recruit Hutu leaders. More than two-fifths of the population is Roman Catholic, one-third is Protestant, and one-tenth is Adventist. Muslims, nonreligious people, and members of Christian schismatic religious communities make up less than a tenth of the population.

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Cultural Life in Rwanda

Good Friday, Easter and Christmas are among the holidays celebrated in Rwanda by the majority Christian population. On August 15, the Roman Catholic community celebrates the Feast of the Assumption. The Muslim community commemorates ʿĪd al-Fiṭr, which marks the end of Ramadan, and ʿĪd al-Aḍḥā, which commemorates the completion of the hajj. Genocide Memorial Day, which is observed on April 7, and Independence Day, which is observed on July 1, are two other holidays.

The Arts

Dances, praise songs, and dynastic poems made up a large part of Rwanda’s traditional cultural heritage to strengthen the Tutsi kingship. Since the country’s independence in 1962, a new set of traditions has emerged, highlighting a distinct cultural stream linked to Hutu ancestry. Regional dances, such as the well-known northern hoe dance, have a prominent place in the country’s cultural repertoire. Basketry, ceramics, and ironwork are examples of traditional crafts that provide a sense of continuity with the past.

Social Context in the Country of Rwanda

Rwanda’s rapid economic growth coincided with significant improvements in living standards, including a two-thirds reduction in child mortality and nearly universal primary school enrollment. Access to services and human development indicators have improved significantly as a result of a strong emphasis on homegrown policies and initiatives.

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Political Context of The Country of Rwanda

Since the 1994 Tutsi genocide, the Country of Rwanda has maintained political stability. Women won 64 percent of the seats in parliament in September 2018, the Rwandan Patriotic Front kept its absolute majority in the Chamber of Deputies, and two opposition parties, the Democratic Green Party of Rwanda and the Social Party Imberakuri, won two seats each for the first time.

Following a constitutional amendment in December 2015 that allowed him to serve a third term, President Paul Kagame was re-elected to a seven-year term in August 2018.

What is Rwanda known for?

Although Rwanda’s endangered mountain gorilla population attracts the majority of visitors, the country has much more to offer. Africa’s Big Five, a plethora of primates, and hundreds of bird species can be found in sparkling lakes, volcanoes, and diverse national parks such as Nyungwe National Park and Akagera National Park. Kigali, Rwanda’s capital, is also rapidly developing as a creative foodie hotspot that should not be overlooked. Come for the gorillas, but stay for the rest of this small country’s attractions.

Is Rwanda a safe country?

The Country of Rwanda was named one of the safest nations in the world in 2017. Even though Rwanda’s proximity to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, which is far less peaceful, has led it to fall in the rankings, 83 percent of people say they feel safe walking alone at night. Kigali, the capital city of Rwanda, is still regarded as Africa’s safest capital city and is a popular destination for solo travelers.

Locals are welcoming, friendly, and hospitable, and crime is comparatively low, with visitors sometimes experiencing petty crime. Pickpockets can be found in crowded places like markets, and rental cars can be broken into for valuables. Travelers are rarely victims of violent crimes. Out of respect for the local culture, women passengers are encouraged to dress modestly.

What is the Biggest Problem in Rwanda?

In the Country of Rwanda, the ruling Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) maintained complete control over political space in 2019. Those who criticize the government or the RPF are routinely threatened by President Paul Kagame and other senior government officials.

Several members of the opposition and one journalist vanished or were discovered dead in mysterious circumstances. Even though the Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB) claimed to have opened investigations into the cases, the results were rarely shared. Security forces allegedly killed 19 people suspected of being involved in an attack in Musanze District in October.

According to reliable sources, arbitrary detention, ill-treatment, and torture continued in both official and unofficial detention facilities. Human Rights Watch continued to document the arbitrary detention and mistreatment of Kigali’s street children.

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